evidentiary value

n. Lawthe quality or authenticity of a record to provide legal or historical proof or adequate evidence the usefulness of records that provides information about the origins, functions, and activities of their creators


The use of the term evidentiary value2 in the common archival appraisal sense appears to have begun by users unintentionally conflating the term “evidentiary” with “evidential,” but there has now been decades of use of the term in the profession as a synonym of, and almost a variant form of, the term “evidential value” in its original sense in archivy. However, in general practice archivists used “evidentiary value” more frequently while discussing the value of records to support a legal case and to document the past in general—and they use “evidential” more often in the narrow Schellenbergian sense of the value of the records to document the functions and activities of the office creating the records.